Of the seven prizes up for grabs among journalists taking part in a ‘simulated incident’ at the naval base at Faslane, on the Clyde (no, not yesterday’s anti-Trident missiles protest), two were won by students from Glasgow Caledonian University.
The students – on the university’s BA Journalism course – were part of a 40-strong simulated press corps which included professionals from the BBC, ITN and Sky.
Exercise ‘Short Sermon’, the biggest to be held at the base for three years, was also attended by key figures from public agencies including Strathclyde Police and Fire Brigade, health boards, the Health Protection Agency and the Scottish Executive.
Gordon Bell, Stuart Miller, Roisin McGroarty and Paul Thomson were required to write wire reports, carry out interviews and attend press conferences.
It was Gordon and Stuart won two of the seven prizes available for general newsgathering initiative on the day. Afterwards, all the students were praised as “excellent” by Scott Hamilton of exercise media organisers, Escott Hunt. “They were inquisitive, persistent and intelligent, and very adaptable,” he said.